2016 Doncaster Mile Preview & Tips

April 2, 2016 by Posted in Horse Racing Tips


The Star Doncaster Mile 2016 – Group 1

The $3 million 2016 Doncaster Mile is one of four Group 1’s on Day 1 of The Championships at Royal Randwick in Sydney, and all eyes will be on Chris Waller’s four-year-old mare Winx, who aims to win her 9th consecutive race.

In doing so she will have to break weight-carrying records for four-year-old mares in this race, and with the minimum weight at 50kg, she faces an almighty task to win here. The 56.5kg weight does see her fairly handicapped but with some quality horses down in the weights she will have to produce possibly her best performance yet to win. Add to that barrier 11 and her job isn’t as simple as the $1.85 price tag makes it seem, so at those odds I’ll be backing one to upset her.

The race is set to be run at a strong tempo with Turn Me Loose, Ecuador and Vergara all vying for the lead. Stratum Star will slot straight into the box seat from barrier 2, and First Seal may sit further forward from barrier 1 with the blinkers on. Good Project and Aomen could sit in the forward part of the midfield division with their light weights and good barrier draws. Kermadec and Bow Creek may take up a position slightly further forward in order to make use of their low barriers, provided the Godolphin horse doesn’t bomb the start again.

Meanwhile, He Or She, Azkadellia and Volkstok’n’barrell will need luck slotting in from out wide. Winx will likely go back to find cover from barrier 11, with Happy Clapper taking up his customary position closer to the back of the field than the front. We may see Rudy roll forward from the wide draw with no weight on his back. The race looks set up for those coming from off the speed.

The race has tended to favour those toward the bottom of the weights, with 9 winners of the last 13 winners carrying 53kg or less.That includes all but 5 runners in this year’s field, and Azkadellia is the one I like most with only 50kg on her back. Her run in the Coolmoore Classic was outstanding and she drops 3kg from that run. She will enjoy the strong tempo and if she has luck slotting in I think she’s got the ability to win this.

Happy Clapper was earmarked for the Doncaster following his fantastic win in the Villiers last preparation. He’s another with no weight on his back and he too will enjoy a strong tempo up front. He would need to improve on what he did last start but an 8kg weight swing on Winx will certainly help.

Volkstok’n’barrell has rediscovered his best form back in New Zealand, recording back to back Group 1 wins in his last two starts. He gets in with only 52.5kg here and while he would need to improve once more, he looks to be back to his best. We could see Bow Creek return to his best after he bombed the start in the Australian Cup. From barrier 4 he will enjoy a great run and we know the turn of foot he possesses. If he jumps with them he shapes as a strong place chance if he runs up to his Gr2 win two starts ago.

Stratum Star and First Seal rate as place chances with their favourable draws, while Good Project would need to improve on recent outings to feature in the finish. He Or She won well last start and has the ability to improve again with the light weight but this is his toughest test to date, while Vergara, Ecuador, Rudy and Aomen will struggle at this level. Turn Me Loose was absolutely awful last start and we all know he is significantly better than that, but it’s hard to know if he can simply bounce back to his best, and he has to carry top weight to go with it.

There is one horse I’ve failed to mention, and I just can’t help but think he stands a massive chance of upsetting the golden girl Winx. His name is of course Kermadec, winner of this race last year as a three-year-old, and his price has now got out to $9 which I think is terrific value. His run last start behind his stablemate was huge, and he had the scope for far more improvement out of that race than what Winx did. He gets a 1.5kg weight swing in his advantage and from barrier 3 he may be able to pinch a few lengths on her instead of chasing her. He comes into this ready to peak, and he will certainly appreciate a bit of cut in the ground. He has all the weight to carry but I do think he can defy that and run an almighty race. At the prices I would rather be backing him on an each way basis than Winx at $1.85.

One thing is for certain, Chris Waller seems to have a strangehold on this race again this year and stands a fantastic chance of winning his 6th Doncaster in the past 9 years.

2nd WINX

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